Top of page
Opening PDFs in Acrobat Reader

Adobe recommends viewing PDFs in Acrobat Reader because other viewers (for example, Apple's built-in PDF viewer) do not display items such as sticky notes, highlight, freehand drawing, handwritten signatures, filled form data, and other items. Some pages may appear incomplete or empty. These items will display if you view your PDF in Acrobat. You can open a PDF in Acrobat from other applications, including:

Note that some OS's allow you to set Acrobat as the default viewer.


  1. Open the PDF attachment.
  2. Tap Open In... or the Share icon (varies).
  3. Choose Copy to Adobe Acrobat.

Note: Mail has known problems with many attachment types (not just PDF attachments). See this FAQ and verify the an entire email message is fully downloaded before opening each attachment.


Note that different browsers may have different workflows. To open a PDF that's open in Safari:

  1. Tap the PDF to show the Open In menu.
  2. Tap Open In....
  3. Choose Copy to Adobe Acrobat.


iBooks does not offer an "Open In" option. To transfer a PDF document from iBooks to Acrobat Reader, email the PDF document to yourself and open it from Mail as described above.

  1. Tap the PDF to show the share icon.
  2. Tap .
  3. Email the PDF to yourself.

Cloud storage services

Acrobat is integrated with Adobe's Document Cloud, Creative Cloud, and Dropbox in a way which enables opening, sharing, and editing workflows. However, Acrobat's support for Apple's Document Picker means you view files stored in other 3rd party applications you've installed, including iCloud, Box, Google Drive, and so on. For details, see Manage connectors and cloud storage for details.